Students Staff

Department of Sociology

Centre for Criminology

University of Essex

Our Centre

Our Centre for Criminology is a local and international centre of excellence for the study of criminology. We attract research funding, produce world class research outputs and engage with local schools, colleges and businesses.

We attract the very best undergraduate and postgraduate research students to our Department and use our criminological research activities as a basis for our teaching.

We also organise seminars and events throughout the year on a range of criminology topics, which are open to all.

Events and seminars

  • 2 May 2018: transational gangs: myths and complicated realities in the case of El Salvador
  • 9 March 2018: Writing in the inside


About us

  • Criminology at Essex

    Criminology textbook

    At Essex we take the sociological approach to studying crime and deviance to answer questions such as:

    • Why are laws made?
    • Why are these laws subsequently broken?
    • What can be done about it?
    • Why is society fascinated with crime?

    One aspect of criminology is to focus on the individual, but here at Essex we take a much broader perspective and research criminology from the social perspective.

  • Our members

    Our members of staff actively engage in research in the fields of:

    • crime and the media
    • drug use and markets
    • women, crime and criminal justice
    • green criminology and crimes against the environment
    • organised crime
    • sexual labour, regulation and human rights
    • security
    • surveillance
    • terrorism and counter-terrorism.

    Our teaching is research based and engaged with the real world.

    Members of the team are:

  • Our work

    Professor Nigel South is currently Director of the Centre for Criminology. He is also contributing to a series of ESRC seminars on green criminology with Dr Tanya Wyatt from Northumbria University.

    Professor Eamonn Carrabine has recently helped organise an ESRC seminar series on 'Visual Criminology' with City University, Keele and Leicester Universities.

    Editors of Crime, Media, Culture

    Editors of Crime, Media, Culture celebrating 10 years of the journal.

    He has also been awarded a three year Leverhulme Major Research Fellowship to begin in September 2015. The project, titled The Iconography of Punishment: From Renaissance to Modernity will focus on how punishment has been represented in the visual arts from the 1500s up to the present day. It will take a multi-disciplinary approach, spanning criminology, history, philosophy and sociology, but is guided by the understanding that cultural processes should be seen as a whole, so that visual analysis is never an end in and of itself, but always has the goal of social and political explanation firmly in sight.

    From January 2015 he has been editing, with Michelle Brown, University of Tennessee, the journal Crime, Media, Culture.

    Upcoming presentations:

    • A talk on Diane Arbus at a 'Cafés des Artistes' public discussion evening on 10 March 2015 at Kirkaldy art gallery, who are hosting a Diane Arbus show from 14 February to 31 May 2015.
    • A talk on ‘Doing Criminological Research’ at the first Irish Postgraduate Criminology Conference, 27 March 2015, Dublin.
    • A plenary on ‘Doing Visual Criminology’ at the Netherlands Society of Criminology Conference, 11-12 June, Leiden.
    • A plenary ‘On Impact’ at University Campus Suffolk Research and Scholarly Activity Day, 24 June 2015, Ipswich.

    Professor Pamela Cox is completing a new Leverhulme project, After Care, with crime historians Professor Barry Godfrey, University of Liverpool and Dr Heather Shore, Leeds Beckett University on the long-term impact of 19th and 20th century youth justice interventions. The project uses digitised historical data to establish 'what happened next' to a large cohort of delinquent, difficult and destitute children passing through England's early youth justice systems.

    Together with Dr Jackie Turton and colleagues from our School of Health and Human Sciences, Pam is also conducting an evaluation of two pioneering interventions run by Suffolk County Council and the Ormiston Trust seeking to reduce the incidence of recurrent care proceedings in the family courts. The interventions are offered on a voluntary basis to birth mothers who have recently lost one or more children to permanent adoption.

    Jackie is chairing a London based conference in March on women who sexually abuse children. She is also giving a paper at the same conference - Do we make it too difficult for women to talk about atypical maternal feelings?

    In April, Jackie is giving a joint paper at the University of Edinburgh with Emma Milne, a current PhD student at Essex, titled The Ambiguity of Motherhood: the stories women cannot tell, at BASPCAN - British Association for the Study of Preventing Child Abuse and Neglect.

    Dr Isabel Crowhurst currently chairs COST Action IS1209 ‘Comparing European Prostitution Policies: Understanding Scales and Cultures of Governance (ProsPol).

    Resilient future website homepage

    Dr Pete Fussey is hosting a Science and Technologies Facilities Council-funded workshop in London on ‘big data’, digital analytics and urban governance during March 2015.

    He has recently concluded work as an expert advisor to the states of Jersey Government Home Affairs Committee on the regulation and ethical use of surveillance on the Island. He has also recently concluded work on two large-scale ESRC and EPSRC funded research projects looking at counter-terrorism in the UK’s crowded spaces and at the future urban resilience until 2050.

    During the summer of 2015, Pete is due to commence a major five-year funded project analysing the ethical and human rights-based implications of using ‘big data’ and digital analytics for surveillance purposes.

  • Study criminology

    We welcome high-quality undergraduate, masters and research students who want to study criminology.

    As a research student you will work closely with your supervisor/s, all of whom have excellent reputations for conducting cutting edge research. You will play a full and active role in the various activities that the Centre is currently developing.

    Members of the centre have excellent contacts with local and central government agencies and international academic and policy networks, which will benefit students working with us and allow us to bid for funding. We have already been successful in attracting funding from the:

    • Home Office
    • Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC)
    • Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (ESPRC)
    • the European Economic Community (EEC).

Contact us

Contact the Centre by emailing and connect with us on our Sociology Facebook and Twitter.